Games

Windows Phone Collections: For The Kids

Games

More mobile Xbox games delisted as Windows Phone struggles to find its way

Xbox

PSA: Xbox Live connectivity issues affecting Xbox 360 and Xbox One; Netflix and Twitch also down

Xbox

PSA: Xbox Live currently experiencing issues, impacts Xbox One and Xbox Music

Games

Rival Knights brings medieval jousting to Windows Phone

Games

The sequel to the popular Dhoom:3 The Game is here… time for the Jet Speed!

Games

Lost Echo, a 3D action adventure game jumps from iOS to Windows Phone Store

Games

Magic Realms for Windows Phone suffers a game-breaking update [Updated]

Games

Ubisoft brings Valiant Hearts and Tetris Ultimate to Xbox One and Xbox 360 this summer

Xbox

Xbox One coming to India in September starting at INR 39,990

Games

Dream of Pixels unleashes beautiful puzzles on Windows Phone

Games

Kabam pledges to bring The Hobbit: Kingdoms of Middle-earth and other casual titles to Microsoft platforms

Xbox

Xbox Live Gold members can now get two free games on their Xbox One

Games

Ice Rage: Hockey, a smashing Windows Phone game full of body checks

Apps

Hack the world with Watch Dogs mobile companion game 'ctOS'

Games

Asphalt 8: Airborne gets updated, adds the SSC Tuatara to the garage

Games

These are the best 'Match Three' games for Windows Phone

Games

Disney releases two new Windows Phone 8 games, Lost Light and JellyCar 3

Games

As expected, Disney Solitaire comes to Windows Phone 8

Microsoft News

Microsoft hires comedian David Mitchell for latest Lumia UK ads

Xbox Windows Phone release drought
136

No new Xbox game for Windows Phone again this week. Here are some possible reasons why...

Things haven’t been looking too good for Xbox games on Windows Phone lately. As our readers probably know, there hasn’t been a new Xbox game released since KenKen on December 19th. Just before that there were two more weeks with no release: one before and one after AlphaJax arrived. Nokia users have a bit more to play thanks to iBomber Defense, but that does not help everyone else. Well, this week the disturbing trend continues: Microsoft has confirmed that there will be no new Xbox Windows Phone game or Deal of the Week this week. Yikes!

Dangerous drought

This officially marks the longest period of time Windows Phone has gone without an Xbox game release since Windows Phone 7 debuted. A year ago at this time we were getting new games like Zombies on the Phone and Bug Village. Not that the latter is an amazing game, but at least it's something! Usually a platform gains releases steadily as time goes on and its popularity grows, so what gives? I’m glad you asked. Here are the most likely explanations for the drought…

Possibility 1: Microsoft has decided not to allow Windows Phone 8-incompatible Xbox games to be released

Tentacles
Many popular games like Tentacles don't run on Windows Phone 8 yet.

As I speculated in yesterday’s article about Risk returning to Windows Phone 8, perhaps someone at Microsoft doesn’t want any more embarrassing Windows Phone 8 incompatible Xbox Live releases popping up. If that’s the case, then just maybe all of the scheduled releases for the past few weeks have suffered incompatibility issues and thus couldn’t be released.

As unlikely as this scenario might sound, it’s actually the best case scenario. Windows Phone 8 is on its way to replacing Windows Phone 7 (sorry, I’m not allowed to abbreviate today), so Microsoft needs to make sure the new OS looks good. Windows Phone 8 owners like myself really get annoyed when a new game comes along that we can’t play… Though you could say the same thing about owners of Windows Phone 7 devices.

Nailing down the various causes of incompatibility and ensuring that all future Xbox Windows Phone games (even those designed for Windows Phone 7) work on the new OS right from their launch is not the worst idea in the world. Most gamers would agree it’s not better than actually releasing games though.

Possibility 2: Microsoft is backing away from Xbox games on Windows Phone

Halo Wars
Halo Wars would easily adapt to touch screen controls. N.O.V.A. proves that mainline Halo games would too.

This less optimistic explanation actually seems more likely to your friendly neighborhood Games Editor. We’ve seen many little signs that point to a lack of faith in Windows Phone from the Xbox Live team over the last year. Initially Microsoft had announced batches of 4-8 news games at semi-regular intervals throughout the year, often accompanying events like CES an E3.

In 2012 they did tease a launch lineup of Windows Phone 8 Xbox games, first at Major Nelson’s blog in October and shortly thereafter at Xbox.com. The lineup included the popular Jetpack Joyride, Fairway Solitaire, Gravity Guy 2, and a handful of Gameloft games. That Xbox.com page has now been removed, though its spirit lives on in our story about it.

Furthermore, none of the games listed actually comes from Microsoft Studios (though they did finance Fairway Solitaire). We don’t know about a single first-party game that’s in development right now, and the only other upcoming second-party games I can name are Skulls of the Shogun and Ascend: New Gods – games announced in June 2012 or earlier.

Microsoft has yet to commit to a Halo or Forza game for Windows Phone – two of their top gaming franchises. Heck, at this point we’d be willing to settle for a sequel to Beards & Beaks! Meanwhile, previous Xbox Windows Phone exclusives like Tentacles, Fable Coin Golf, Kinectimals, and Wordament have jumped ship to iOS. Not everyone will connect the dots and see a lack of commitment from the platform holder here… But it’s hard to see anything else.

Possibility 3: Third-party development is drying up

MiniSquadron for Windows Phone
The makers of MiniSquadron actually pulled their game rather than dealing with the update certification process.

This ties in with the previous possibility. You see, where the first party goes, third parties usually follow. If Microsoft doesn’t show faith in their own platform, why would third-party mobile developers who already make their profits on iOS and Android?

It’s not just looks that matter, either. Like it or not, Windows Phone holds a distant third place in market share compared to its rival smartphone platforms. Yes, our OS is growing, but not fast enough to create a comparable userbase. As such, a major developer would actually be silly to make an Xbox Windows Phone game – exclusive or otherwise – without some kind of incentive from Microsoft. If Microsoft is no longer out there sweet-talking developers and funding new ports of popular titles, there just won’t be enough games released until the platform grows much larger.

Possibility 4: Microsoft has totally forgotten about several games they could release right now

Shao-Lin's Road and Time Pilot

This wouldn’t be a ‘no Xbox release’ post without us mentioning Shao-Lin’s Road, Time Pilot, and Loondon. All three games are complete, though the third title might require additional language translations before being released. Loondon is a simple 3D remake of a Flash adventure game. We uncovered the story behind its vaporware development cycle last year.

Shao-Lin’s Road and Time Pilot are both Game Room titles – classic arcade games from Konami that would run on Windows Phone via emulation. Shao-Lin’s Road plays a bit like the NES game Kung Fu, though with the levels and the characters’ range of movement greatly increased. Time Pilot is a 2D shoot-em-up in which the player’s ship can move and fire in 8 directions instead of just one. Both titles are more visually complex than the four Game Room titles that actually got released. The existing Game Room titles run on Windows Phone 8, by the way.

Microsoft funded these projects and chose not to release them. Every time we have a dry week with no release, you have to wonder whether anybody on the Xbox Windows Phone team remembers they exist.

Final call (of the week)

If you ask me, all four scenarios seem likely at this point. I wish I could interpret the data more optimistically, but there’s been too little good news to go on lately. Let’s just hope things turn around next week, much as we hoped this week and the week before.

What do you think, dedicated readers? Do our hypothetical explanations for the Xbox game release drought sound accurate, or can you propose another explanation?

Photo courtesy of the Science Education Resource Center at Carlton College.

0
loading...
0
loading...
28
loading...
0
loading...

Comments

There are 136 comments. Sign in to comment

Bummer. At least I saved a few bucks again this week.

Hiiiiiiiii says:

Just add it to the bucket of broken Microsot promises if there is any space left that is

Vheissu says:

I really hope that MS isn't giving up on their platform already, since WP8 has been out a grand total of 2 months

I think they don't. You don't rebuild something on a new kernel and decide later you don't like it. 
Most of the games dont come directly from microsoft.
And honestly: Didn't all of us had better things to do in the past weeks? 

I would be so pissed!!! Lol.

AngryNil says:

What Microsoft needs to do is freaking overhaul their stupid Xbox Live certification process.
No more BS third parties doing terrible yet painstaking slow testing, no more ridiculous payments to push updates (it's the case on XBLIG). Just good games being noticed by Microsoft during development, some code thrown in for achievements, and extra work done in conjunction with Microsoft to make sure it meets standards (which are non-existent for current games. Many are buggy, terrible ports with the wrong resolution, or not even updated for freaking Mango).

ViniBT says:

Copying and pasting what I wrote at xbox360a.org:
"I've been using Windows Phone since december/2011 and, after more than one year, I must say that I am not fully satisfied with the mobile platform that I chose. No, I'm not talking about Instagram, YouTube or Google Maps. I'm talking about games.

My mom has an old Samsung running some old version of Android. With curiosity, I went to take a look at the app store and I came (behold!) with things like GTA and Dead Space. Googling some more, I noticed other great games. This got me annoyed and bored.

However, considering the history of the Xbox and Xbox 360, how is it possible that Microsoft cannot bring significant titles for Windows Phone? Are the console partnerships with developers and publishers not worth anything to try something relevant in mobile platform? Doesn't the success of the console fit as a good reference to Windows Phone?

Based on the resounding success of the Xbox and in the fact that Microsoft is now established as an entertainment company, one would expect that the games were the great advantage of Windows Phone. But...

Nor it seems that Windows Phone and Xbox are part of the same corporation. But knowing that in fact are, I'd like to see the Xbox team running Windows Phone Division. It seems that Mr. Belfiore likes more to talk than to act.

Not even Windows Phone 8 seems to have been able to repair this lack. And I, with my WP7, I will have to live with this frustration.

Am I being too exaggerated? Are my frustrations unfounded?"

esaud says:

Totally agree +1

+1000
We need halo (nova isn't good enough) and gears of wars.

tylerh1701 says:

Well said.  Great point, like you say MS now has developed quite the gaming pedigree with the success of the Xbox brand.  You'd think games would be one of the things they could use to really highlight Windows Phone.

sanien says:

Exactly thats why im even more disappointed.

rich4A1 says:

I think both Windows Phone and Xbox are in Microsoft's Device division, which is probably as close as they can be?

expectafight says:

GTA on a phone like the HTC One S (not One X) is terrible.  And thats with a phone that shipped with Ice Cream.  Maybe its because I use both OS's frequently but let me say this anyway, everything is not greener on Android's grass (and I would say the same thing to my fellow fandroids about the supposedly ugly Android apps). 
Look, most FPS's on smartphone's suck control-wise and if the experience is bad, the uproar about the xbox tie in would be worse then just bellyaching by impatient people.  A Halo-reach type game would be something that could relate well, but that thought process has its downsides too (see: Crackdown 2:Project Sunburst).  Just stop the bitching, convergence of common IPs is something we all want, sure, but the dev tools did just come out 3 months ago.  Some of the more graphically intensive games are going to take time.  Even with middleware, the OS (once again) is in its infancy.  Add to that, It's still 3 resolutions to support. 
Lets look at this a different way, (some) people want console games to be played in some way shape or form, on a phone.  The controller for most last gen consoles had twin-sticks and 8 command buttons.  Replicating that with a gyroscope/accelerometer isnt easy and again, thats just last gen.  Top down gaming is OK, but over shoulder shooters aka 3rd person - like gears of war, really isn't that feasible when you have to put thumbs on the glass (which obstructs your view).
I'm so tired of this.  
PS:
That "It seems that Mr. Belfiore likes more to talk than to act" comment is completely ridiculous.  Flat out. 
 

Paul Acevedo says:

There are plenty of FPS games that work well on iOS and Android. You may personally dislike them, but they continue to sell and gain popularity. On Windows Phone we want the same gameplay opportunities.

And speaking of which, when will we get the Gameloft games, temple run, Pandora, etc?

You expect me to wait that long? While we are at it, lets push it till CTIA, or even E3...

WinFan1 says:

That's what I wanna know

Shit, I'd just like to get the hoth update for angry birds star wars! My daughter laughs at my phone, while playing all levels for this game, and batman, and dead space, etc. on her new galaxy tablet.

RaRa85 says:

And a hopefully different scenario: Microsoft is about to release some super killer big name titles for the platform. We really need something big! Here's to wishful thinking.

Tjalsma says:

Unfortunately, I'd wager that IF MS had a super killer big name title, the launch of WP8 would have been the perfect time to release information about it.  Generally speaking, almost every semi-big name game comes with leaks, rumors, etc.  What we have here is...nothing...nothing at all.
Don't get me wrong, I love my phone.  However, this CONSTANT need for us to remain internally optimistic is getting rather tiring.  No info on games, little info on 7.8, etc.  One thing that MS certainly has for them is they must have the most patient and loyal consumers on the planet.

RaRa85 says:

Yes this is true though. I upgraded in February of last year and I'm on T-Mobile who of course didn't get the Lumia 920. Its been seven months since the announcement and the teasing(demo running on Lumia 900) of the 7.8 update and Microsoft hasn't even confirmed a release date other than "coming soon." I think our patience has been very well tested and really the only reason I haven't given in to abandoning the platform is really because I love Windows Phone. However, I think they're asking for a lot when we get games after everyone else. No Instagram or some other big name apps. Constantly behind in features(taking pictures while recording video) and the best phone is nailed down to one carrier in the States. It's getting hard to hang in there with Windows Phone when this always the case but my heart is with Microsoft. I really hope in the course of this year, a lot of this changes or I'm getting an Android phone and I'll keep my HTC Titan(hopefully running 7.8 by then) just to hold on to.

MediaCastleX says:

I posit that there is actually NOTHING that anyone would do to satisfy anyone...sure, I would love to play all kinds of games on my phone, but this is not something that would really sway me to change platforms altogether. There's more to it than just games, but if people are tired of waiting for something I think they should be the ones to MAKE it happen. =)

RaRa85 says:

Did you not read my comment? We are lagging behind in a host of areas not just games. Almost every area and I'm just ready to see Windows Phone on TOP. But trust me, if I worked for Microsoft I would be working my butt off to make sure Windows Phone becomes the front-runner in the OS race. And not saying that there aren't people working for Microsoft who aren't but when you make the people that supported the platform from the beginning or people who recently upgraded wait more than half a year for a mostly cosmetic update, can you really expect consumers to be ok with that? Especially if you actually like the phone you're using and not in a rush to spend extra money for an early upgrade. If Windows Phone was the top OS then, hey that's fair but we're trying to make our way up. And like I said the phone that everyone covets is tied down to one carrier.

Mouthsmasher says:

Apparently Microsoft has reorganized their Vancouver studio and tasked it with developing a franchise big enough to be "the next Halo" for Microsoft. Here is the game studio's website: Black Tusk Studios.

Personally, I think Microsoft needs to start pairing games together across the Xbox and WP in a similar way that they did with Fable III and Fable Coin Golf. For those who don't know, when you'd play Fable Coin Golf on your phone, you'd earn gold that you'd then be able to use in-game when you played Fable III on your Xbox. Imagine if there was some fun little Halo game that tied in with Halo 4 on the Xbox that rewarded you with H4 XP. Microsoft could do other similar game tie-ins for Gears of War or Forza that had platform crossing rewards.

As an Xbox gamer, this was a HUGE draw in for me.  I'd love to see more exclusive games that both award XB Live achievements and enhance my console gaming experience.

wazup113 says:

Honestly I know I am the only one but this wouldn't matter for me...i share an Xbox with brother and use a different email when we made it in 2006 so I will not be able to have any of the Xbox features because my wp8 is a different email bit Is there a way to use a different email in the Xbox app

Paul Acevedo says:

You can put your phone's Gamertag onto your Xbox 360. A 360 can have any number of Gamertags on it. It honestly makes no sense (other than saving money) to share one Gamertag between two people. Your friends wouldn't be able to tell you apart, all of your personal Achievements would just blend together, etc...

DavidinCT says:

Maybe they are still in the process of programming new games ? It's hard to say but, disapointing so far for me. I just got a HTC 8x looking forward to games that can run on the dual core CPU and the HD screen. Is there any WOW games out there now ? Sure if you want puzzle type games that iOS has had on it for a while now, sure but, any hard core games ? Nothing.
 
It sort of reminds me of how the release of the 3DS was, you got about 5-7 tiles (most of them sucked) and nothing for about 2-3 months. Then they started to release fairly cool tiltes. Maybe the good titltes are in programming now for WP8 ?
 
I have my phone setup on my dev account and I side loaded Tentacles 1.1 to see what the problem where with it. Audio got choppy on my phone, the game played but, at the end of the first level, the game just exited, when i went back, it didn't save my progress...Wish they would fix it...
 
this does suck tho, new Dual core phone with HD display and no new games to show it off on :(

theefman says:

Shouldn't be a surprise, Xbox live gaming has always seemed to be an afterthought on WP.

Tomasz S. says:

The world would be a better place if Microsoft didn't break XNA backwards compatibility in Windows Phone 8.
Why, Microsoft, why the fck?
 

MediaCastleX says:

They needed to end Silverlight in order to foster that html5 development cycle because people are unmotivated slugs sometimes =[

Getting high title games for WP is like a rare thing. I would be glad if asphalt 7, temple run, subway surfer, and games like these even come to WP by mid year.. If they don't, im not gonna be surprised.. :) well that's my views about games for WP

Residing says:

Hmmm.  Interesting viewpoints, all credible.  I can certainly understand anyone being frustrated by this; I have only had my Lumia 900 for about 6 weeks, so it is still very new to me, and the few games that I do have, I am no where near completing them.  But I do find myself hitting the Marketplace, daily, perusing all areas, including games.  No new XBox Live games or well known titles, not to mention price drops/sales.
 
I am hopeful, however, that once the 'newness' of WP7.5 starts to diminish for me (which I predict will be awhile), that there will be more XBox Live games in the store.  But for the sake of everyone else who have been with the platform longer than I, or have a new WP8 device, I hope that the games (and apps) come a lot sooner.

Paul Acevedo says:

Very nicely said, Residing. :)

miloadams says:

Paul, what's going on with the rumors for Xbox 720. maybe there's a generation shift in gaming that is/was a similar shift from windows phone 7 to 8 and MS doesn't want developers getting invested in the current Xbox windows phone SDK if changes will be made for the upcoming Xbox platform

Paul Acevedo says:

I don't know too much more about the 720 than you guys (sadly). But I don't think the Windows Phone SDK will be going through major changes anytime soon; they just did that with WP8, so they have to run with what they've got for a while.

tgr42 says:

I think there are more important problems with the platform than a lack of new releases of crappy Xbox-branded games.

Paul Acevedo says:

We mainly want good Xbox-branded games, not crappy ones. Nobody ever said this was the only problem facing Windows Phone.

I honestly don't think that there is a bigger problem, in terms of the OS. The lack of apps hurts the martketshare, which hurts the apps further the longer that problem drags on. You go from having a small number of apps and consumers to having developers disheartened by slow growth due to lower levels of high-qualtiy titles, which leads to end-of-life treatment.
 
If Android's taught me anything, people will tolerate bugs and a generally-slow OS if the apps are there. Windows Phone is much more polished and functional than Gingerbread was, in my opinion. The only thing it lacks is the apps, and Microsoft HAS to lead the way on that.

paulcurses says:

Could't agree more! I have been a WP7 user since the LG Optimus 7 (sympathy needed) and am just about to reach the end of my contract. At first I was going to jump straight onto the Lumia 820/920 (dependent on storage needs) but to be fair the lack of apps is becoming almost unbearable.  Watching friends show off the latest new android/iphone app and I can barely show a decent facebook app (just pin the webpage nowadays) is making me contemplate juming ship.
Considering my reasons for joining WP was the xbox integration, news stories like this are in no way making me reconsider...

MattLFC says:

Would be very dangerous, and stupid, for Microsoft to lose faith in WP now, given the money invested in the platform and Nokia this far. They'd have stuck with 7 if that was the case, no need for WP8 development.

 

I would like to see something like this brought to the Windows 8 phone! Games like this are what I like it's based off the EverQuest MMO game... http://windowsphonethoughts.com/news/show/41190/everquest-for-the-pocket... I believe there were three releases/Levels of this game and it was really enjoyable to play until I got to the end... That was back in 2003... I might have to pull out my old Audiovox PPC-6700 pick it up again!

I would also like to see more PopCap titles come to the Windows Phone 8 they were well suited for this type of environment!

busngabb says:

In summary of the article, you don't actually have any idea what the cause is?

Do you not have a contact at Microsoft you could contact to pose this very question to them?

Given the strength of the Xbox gaming platform, it is a surprise there aren't any (almost literally) quality games on the platform. They could in theory easily port over several Live Arcade classics, with little work other than graphical downgrades and touch control being added. I am sure they could destroy Android and Ios in a couple of months with the vast resources they have to play with.

Paul Acevedo says:

The Xbox Marketting team just had a regime change, so I'm hopeful that the new staff will be willing to address issues like this. Of course we always head to the source in addition to offering our own speculation... Fingers crossed that it pans out this time.

evilrobot says:

I'd like to see what Nokia has to say about this as well.  Then again, if the rumors are true that they will be selling their mobile division to MS or (was it Huawei) then maybe they don't care?

ChazTyldsley says:

Maybe they just don't have any games to release...?
 
I doubt they're giving up on releasing Xbox games for the platform, especially with the new console around the corner I expect to see quite a large tie in between the two platforms. Also the platform is the healthiest it's ever been since WP7 launched. For the first time ever the mainstream audience seem to know that the platform exists and Microsoft seem to be pushing it pretty hard here in the UK with ads. Meadowhall shopping centre has a dedicated little booth to play with the phones and speak to representatives along with digital ad boards. They wouldn't go to all this effort then just give up on releasing a games...

CylonJason says:

That's a nice and optimistic view that I'm choosing to believe as well ChazTyldsley. Hopefully our patients and slowness to get angry or jump to dire conclusions pays off.

The idea of "they just don't have any games to release" is probably the worst possibility of all. That would mean that they couldn't get a new game made in, what, 6 months? WP8 has been in-development for a good, long time now, so their mobile team could/should have gotten with the gaming division and had some stuff ready at launch. Remember how Halo propelled the Xbox into households? It could have done the game for Windows Phone.

I would rather hear that they're having compatibility issues than they simply don't have stuff there.

JPDVM2014 says:

Exactly, I know several people that would be willing to lose a couple apps in order to play a new Halo game on their phone.

+1 There is no way MS is going to just give up on WP8.  They have way too much invested in it.  I'm sure they are working to release games as soon as possible.  It kinda seems they are scrambling on all fronts trying to keep up with all they have going on.  I understand bringing issues like this to light however I think that sometimes blog sites including WPCentral, sorry guys, tend to blow things out of proportion to get people to start talking.  Mark my words,  There will be games soon. 

ChazTyldsley says:

Completely agree. Not only invested in WP8 but also Windows 8 and no doubt the next Xbox which will tie in to both in a significant way. This isn't something that's going to happen over a couple of months, it takes time and Microsoft do genuinely seem dedicated to promoting the platform and making it a success.
 
When WP7 hit there was no noise whatsoever, no ads, barely any kind of mainstream presence. This time it's completely different. EE ads are plastered all over bus stops around here with the Lumia 920 on them too. In such a competitive market I'd say they're doing pretty well when you look at it realistically.

evilrobot says:

No new games to release is not an excuse for no Deal of the Week though.

based_graham says:

They should come. It's not just Windows Phone its Windows as well. I assume MS is working on more cross platform titles. It might take some time but if they execute perfectly its time worth spent.
Skulls of the Shogun is a prime example.
Also MS needs to work on Cloud saving so I assume this Xbox transition is bigger than it is right now. It needs to get sorted out ASAP. Games should come flying soon after February.
All the EMO talk for WP is pointless the platform is only going up.

Sharpmango says:

I would actually think that the staff responsible for this have been repisitioned to help iron out the flaws of xbox on wp8 in general.. Perhaps once the niggles are gone, we can get back to progressing

Terrin says:

I am gonna go with option one as Microsoft wouldn't have announced gameloft brinign over 12 xbl games  and temple run to xbl and put the time into coding it for windows phone 8 if they were going to drop it like that I mean they added xbox to windows 8 plus someone contacted gameloft and said they are just finishing up 4-5 of the titles and they will be available soon

I think it's lack of interest from a developers POV. They'd made so much money from the quick success of Apple & Google that they see no need to help Microsoft. Also, if the Xbox surface is true, they may be waiting for that to touchdown.

busngabb says:

That is where you expect a level of investment from Microsoft. Of course there isn't a sufficient base to attract developers on windows phone yet. So they should incentivise them with far superior commercials to Android and IOS and self fund several top notch titles. Developers will always develop if MS paid them what they would earn on the other platforms.

evilrobot says:

The silence on the matter from MS is disturbing.

This bothers me more than anything.

omagic82 says:

Maybe we should all ping @joebelfiore or @windowsphone on twitter and see what the deal is. Surely they wouldn't ignore us if we all starting asking questions.

Residing says:

Lol!  I would love too.. I created a Twitter account months ago,  but even though I visit tech sites almost daily, I am no techie at all - I just don't know how to send a tweet :)  I'm sure it's so simple even a 5yr could do it, but I haven't figured it out.  Sad, I know:(
 
 

Paul Acevedo says:

Put a little time into it and I'm sure you'd figure it out, dude. Nobody figures things out by not trying. You could easily do a web search for a guide. But I'll have you the time. Find the box on the left of the Twitter website in which users enter their tweets. Type the twitter handle of the person you're communicating with (@segacon is mine), a space, and then the content of your tweet. Send when it's done. Tweets can only be 140 characters so you need to be concise or send multiple tweets to communicate larger ideas.

tylerh1701 says:

This exactly.

I dont want to believe a word you said but the lack of games is starting to make me wonder. I just dont get it. Then again I just dont get a lot of things MS does at this point. It isnt much better on Windows 8/RT. I think at last count there are only 21 Xbox games with most coming out at launch. With all the game resources this company has you would think they would have launched both WP8 and Windows 8/RT with a bunch of amazing blockbuster games.

N8tiveT3ch says:

I've always tried to ealier adopted and got burned. This is no different but I'll accept it and move forward. Now if they happened to bring something to marketplace then awesome I'll consider the purchase otherwise my money is spent else where. Plus one thing that annoys me is that people look for the XBOX live branding way too much. There are some decent titles in the marketplace that aren't XBOX enabled. I digress because that has yet to be updated too.

evilrobot says:

The problem is that several 'Indie' titles have gone Xbox Live and people who bought the indie version got screwed over (the XBL version is considered a different game so they have to repurchase if they want achievements or future updates). Doodle God is one example, Alpha Jax is another (I paid $4.99 for alpha jax only to have it replaced with an inferior add-supported free version).

N8tiveT3ch says:

Sure, I just under the assumption that most WP users like buying achievements.

evilrobot says:

True, lots of them do :)  I used to buy lots of indie games but now I'm contanstly worried I'm throwing my money down a hole every time I consider one.  Then there's games like tentacles that I bought the day before I upgraded to WP8 and have yet to be able to play.  WP gaming is such a huge mess right now.

glenc says:

xbox certification adds a large complication layer to release (see angry birds) and MS is historically poor at developer support at this level where they NEED help to jump hurdles let alone maintain code. Free tools is great but support is meh. Marketshare (no verizon/sprint for 2 years) really restricted WP7. Now there are a glut of xbox games for NEW wp8 customers who will be the largest majority of winphone users by mid year.
 
Most "ports" of  popular games shoudl be expedited not put on xbox live either.
 
I wonder if xbox720 is also in play. Since that will likely share much code with Win8/WP8/WinRT and run on the Win8/RT kernel game development would lag months prior to it's release (games take months and months).
 
It's not a stretch to say the MS will quickly jettison xbox360 for gamers and transition 360 to casuals/media upon 720 release. MS pinches pennies in all the wrong places and dev studios are a notable place of high risk spending that is cut.
So all in all no surprise.

AdamBull says:

Confused why we can't/haven't/are unable to get an answer from MS on this.

Paul Acevedo says:

I'm actually working on getting a detailed answer right now. We'll keep you guys posted if it comes through.

Thanks for your work Paul, you are doing the best job you can.

Paul Acevedo says:

Appreciate the kind words, man!

Banstyle says:

Better to have no answer than have a disappointing soundbyte traveling throught the internet, enraging fanboys and worrying stockholders. The silence speaks volumes though.

ebradley says:

The commitment seems to be waning. The Halo Waypoint app can be used as an example of that. Use the Waypoint app to access all of your Halo data, except Halo 4, that is. The web app is laggy as hell and routinely crashes. ( on IE9, WP7 Mango ). Things like this is making WP platform less endearing to me, but better than the alternatives.

Tahiti Bob says:

Technically, more Xbox games were released in the past few weeks on iOS than on Windows Phone :D

Nakazul says:

Would be nice with some words from MSFT. I still haven't received Lumia 920, and if the WP catalogue have a lot of games missing from WP7 such I bought, a switch to competing platforms is easier. Microsoft need to comment on existing games or they might scare customers away.

Nakazul says:

But is that all, or are there more?

evilrobot says:

That's just the Xbox branded games not sure if you are looking for indie titles or not.  I think that Paul is keeping that list updated though so it should be all of the Xbox branded games that are missing.

Paul Acevedo says:

Thank you, Evilrobot. Yes, that list is up to date.

Nakazul says:

Thnx a bunch.

pookiewood says:

They promised games that you could start on your console, tablet, laptop or phone and then continue on one of those other devices.  I hope they haven't given up already!  WP8 is about to hit the big time!  If it's the XBOX Live camp not looking to tarnish their name then I say get over it!  YOU ARE ON THE SAME TEAM!!!  HELP EACH OTHER OUT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

sinime says:

I think a lot of the, "start on your console, tablet, laptop or phone and then continue on one of those other devices" is dependent on the developers... except that I just now realized that there would be an issue with achievements... which are separate for each platform... hmmm
 
 

jsk0703 says:

Maybe they are holding out due to the impending release of Apollo plus?  Maybe Apollo plus adds stability and/or more features which are worth holding up game release?  Just my thoughts.

johaas says:

Man, I really want to play that Tentacles game. Windows Phone 8 is the point that I was finally able to jump on board and I've heard so much good stuff about that game.

omagic82 says:

It's a great game. I'm glad I paid for it and just bought this new HTC 8X. /s

evilrobot says:

@omagic82 - right there with you, bought it one day before I got my Lumia 920 and haven't even had a chance to play it.

SoCalBIGmike says:

Wow. Can't Nokia step in here?!

Metrosity says:

For a company with a highly successful gaming division, said company's mobile platform lacks that great gaming pedigree. I mean where's the mobile versions of their original ip's e.g Conker, Banjo Kazooie, Perfect Dark, etc; why don't they promote more indies like A.R.M as well?

CylonJason says:

If you're just starting on Windows Phone 8 or are relatively new to the platform, there are tones of great Xbox Live games on the platform. Even if you've been there since the beginning like me, I have 33 Xbox games on my Lumia 920 right now, a few that haven't been ported over from my WP7 games but a few WP8 exclusives too, and I'm not even close to finishing most of them so the lack of new titles has yet to concern me. So I'm going to save some money and use my time to work on some achievements for games I already have and optimistically look forward to future games to come out on the platform.

humboldt1 says:

You listed Bug Village by mistake as a good game from last year in your article?
That game has more bugs than the actual game itself,are you joking or you've just never played it?

Glu games are probably a big reason why MS is shy about releasing new games,they're all terribly buggy games that get no further support from the devs,try reading the endless negative reviews of bug village alone.

Paul Acevedo says:

I didn't say it wad good. I was just relating the first 2 Xbox WP games released last year.

prestonalan says:

What about disenfranchisement of certain game developers? It's not easy to get your original game certified for XBL status. Ask the developers of ARMED! XBL games have better placement and provide better revenue. However if you don't want to or can't go through the XBL process then you're stuck with 2nd fiddle. I am VERY sure this has kept some iOS and Android devs from porting popular titles. Unfortunately right now, there's XBL games and everyone else. The two tier system isn't really a good way to go if you need to lure as many game developers as possible. I have faith in Microsoft that this silent period is a time of reorganization for the better as far as XBL on WP is concerned.

zakaweb says:

3rd party game apps has been my only source of disappointment with Windows Phone.  It's difficult to understand how Microsoft could allow this to continue on the new platform also.  I continue to support MS with my Nokia 920 but I'm discouraged about the lack of 3rd party support.  MS needs to put up some money to finance some of these big titles. Once they are made available and others see them as profitable maybe things will turn around.  I can continue just fine without gaming being a major part of my phone experience but the truth is a great game library is necessary for this platform to take off.

lemonsteveo says:

All this talk about win phone and Xbox got me thinking what a missed opportunity this could have been. If they got it right from the start with plenty of quality titles, multiplayer, better marketing, windows phone could be much better positioned by now (at least with gamers). Wish they pushed it with at least half the effort of the Xbox.

Hanhua Yin says:

The same is true for GFWL. Steam and GFWL,were equally crappy when they first came out, around the same time. Steam evolved, but because Microsoft dropped the ball early for GFWL, GFWL didn't improve and now is dead, which is especially frustrating foR us Xbox gamers as we'd love to play games on PC and get Xbox achievements at the same time.

jjmurphy says:

Here's the most likely situation.  The SDK took WAY to long to get finalized, and developers haven't had time to do anything about it.  Microsoft dropped the ball by trying to be super secretive about features that we all knew about. 
The games will come, but it will take time.  Also, all it takes is Microsoft to come out with some sales numbers that matter.  They should be working with Rovio or Popcap, or another high visibility house to promote how much $$ is made on the platform.  Apple does this extremely well.  Everyone wants a piece of the $7B pie. 
 
Microsoft already touts these downloads on W8.  Why not WP8 unless things really are going badly.

AriesDog says:

I blame this and other screw-ups at the feet of VP Phil Spencer. Microsoft Studios, as a publisher and developer, has been on a downward slide since Shane Kim retired as boss.

dagrepont says:

Really none of this shocks me. When the Xbox 360 came out a lot of the launch titles weren't that good and it took some time before anything good like Gears of War or Halo 3 to come out. I think it just takes time to develop for a new platform.

Postulation1 says:

This whole thread seems to be focused on games, but the truth of the matter is that it applies ot all apps.  The month of December had the fewest new apps relaeased of any month since WP7 was released. 
http://wp7applist.com/en-US/stats/
I have been wondering about this for weeks.  Microsoft made a big deal about how they were keeping staff on durign the holidays to certify new apps but there doesn't seem to be very many.
Would love an explanation.

For mobile games i've bought ipad. Playing on mobile phones is useless for me. My lumia920 dont need them but the wp8 platfrom ofcourse needs a lot of apps and games (a lot of people are playing on their smartphones).

tylerh1701 says:

Well written article, even though it was a bummer to read.
 
At this point, it's hard to believe that Possibility 2 isn't happening.  

paulm187 says:

Microsoft should have released the SDK earlier, but they didn't and what's more being super secret frustrated a lot if developers. They perhaps have other projects on their minds.

Nataku4ca says:

it could be that the SDK was released too late for the game developers for WP8 as well isn't it? i mean  it does take time for these things to be developed even when porting them, i don't know i just prefer to be a bit more optimistic

NickMon68 says:

I am only on Windows Phone for the XBL integration and the achievements i can get on the train...if it stops theres no reason to be on this platform..
 
 

NickMon68 says:

As for Halo on WP7/8 - hell yes would buy that in an instant even if premium priced all the way up to say $10

Hanhua Yin says:

Halo Coin Golf lol

Jonadam23 says:

Gaming should be windows phone's strong suit. I love the platform but this waiting game is starting to annoy me. 

Murgatroyd7 says:

Although #2 wouldn't surprise me because of what is happening with the Xbox in terms of exclusives, I really doubt that is the case.  It wouldn't make sense to bow out when the OS has finally become relevant in the marketplace.  I'm leaning more toward #1 (or something equally innoccuous), partially because it makes more sense to me and partially because I'm trying to be optimistic.

Guitarman450 says:

The only real thing that is holding people back is our limited apps. It seems that's the only thing people care about but as long as you keep adding apps I think people will be more likely to join. Unless they are stuck up and still believe the iPhone and Android are the perfect platforms (which I don't like either of them)

Talbot690 says:

What really needs to happen is for the higher ups at microsoft to read these comments!!!

Talbot690 says:

We are the loyal few... Why are we ignored

bilzkh says:

Screw Microsoft, seriously...if you've got people in other divisions sitting with their thumbs up their assess with no confidence in WP, then WP is as good as dead. If WP was Apple's platform, they'd bust day and night to make sure people will end up lining up for it. Sorry MS, you're digging your own grave.

phasar says:

Microsoft is a Dinosaur.

Darkness690 says:

Microsoft shouldn't have dropped XNA for WP8.

VanillaFrog says:

Are the game engines even released yet? Don't they need to be done before games can be ported?

Paul Acevedo says:

No, they're not released yet. Games can be ported without them (we've been receiving ports since 2010), but the engines would certainly expedite the process.

VanillaFrog says:

Indeed. Lets hope that once the game engines are released that we see a steady flow of high quality games hit WP8. I also hope that someone at Microsoft reads your article and gets the ball rolling on promoting the hell out of gaming on Windows Phone. Some high quality first party games would also be nice.

Robzter says:

If they could ( and I know they probably can't) make Minecraft Xbox edition run on a phone, with cross platform multiplayer (I play on my phone with someone else on their Xbox) they would get VERY popular very quickly. They could also do that with other Xbox arcade games, like Doritos crash course or limbo.

Bhagi108 says:

Still waiting for Asphalt 7 to hit the store!

Hanhua Yin says:

This is like GFWL all over again, except that it is worse this time, as we don't have a Steam alternative. None of the major mobile game makers, from Square Enix to EA to Rovio, actually made any effort to maintain their scarce launch titles, and many devs that released their WP7 games never cared to make a WP8 patch. I am still waiting for Cave to release a WP8 patch for Dodonpachi Maximum. Given that they jumped ship by moving this game, which was supposed to be WP exclusive, to iOS, it seems to be unlikely at this point.

At least for GFWL there were companies that used to stick to it for a while. For WP7/8 no one cared from the beginning.

ms touted the close relationship with xbox and windowsphone  as far as gaming. so far we got a whole lot of nothing. this was supposed to be a strong point with the windowsphone. when i want to kill time and mobile game i have to turn on my iphone which i though was gone for good. i wont even get to the disapoinhtment of the gsming situation on windows rt.

#5 - Everyone, including Microsoft themselves, are no longer giving a fuck about us. Wouldn't doubt it for a second. Fuckers. I switched from iPhone expecting more I'm not gonna lie. The bar is high.

Skeet1981 says:

I would imagine that most of their efforts are going into the new xbox. Windows phone games are going to be pretty low priority at the moment. I'm sure when the new Xbox is released it will all come together.

Mon-El says:

Not sure if this has already been mentioned but windows 8 has not launched many titles. There are only 20 xbox titles thus.

Yaymee says:

Thanks to Nokia there actually is a new Xbox for Windows Phone title out: Picnic Wars with the usual 2,99 pricetag

Paul Acevedo says:

Just posted an article on that. Glad Nokia's coming through for us. :)

The ZennyBoy says:

Am I the only person who has a life beyond expecting a new Xbox game every week?

Paul Acevedo says:

Thank you for taking some time out of your busy life to comment at our Windows Phone enthusiast site. ;)

UKintel says:

I was happy with my os untill i read this. You lot depress me

Paul Acevedo says:

The OS maker drops the ball for a while, people get depressed. Things could still turn around though. ~ ~

Microsoft really need to work out something to solve this problem